Apparently Amazon is trying to get some press time with a promotional offer of a free Kindle (see related article at Techcrunch). According to the email promotion today, if you order the Kindle in the next 5 days and do not like it then you can ask for a refund AND keep the eReader! This special offer was sent to people who are frequent book shoppers at Amazon. Are you one of the chosen? Quick, check your junk mail!
Is this a last ditch effort to get those people waiting on the sidelines for a Kindle before Apple release their tablet/eReader next week? The timing of the increase in author and publisher royalty program and now this free offer is just too coincidental.
Should Amazon be concerned? Based on the recent activities, it seems they are and trying various ways to get gain market share prior to next week’s Apple event. At this point it’s not even fair to compare the Amazon Kindle Reader to Apple’s imminent device and here are a few reasons why:
1. Amazon’s Kindle is geared toward reading and only cost $259.
2. Apple’s tablet is on the other end of the market spectrum with a cost of close to $1,000
3. Reading books will likely be a secondary focus for Apple’s multi-media device and will likely be more of a threat to netbooks than eReaders
The key to Amazon staying on top of the eReader market is to stay focused on continuing to develop, enhance, and enrich the reading experience and not try to compete with others on fancy features.